This week, Sony announced it will stop putting this particular code on its CDs.
But they aren't retracting their "Screw the Customer" Customer Agreement, which reserves their right to install spyware on your computer:
Sony's misplaced zeal to protect its intellectual property suggests that the company sees its customers not as kings but as captives. The Electronic Frontier Foundation yesterday dissected the Sony-BMG end-user license agreement (EULA) that accompanies Sony-BMG CDs and detailed the terms of imprisonment.
As the EFF explains, the EULA says that 1) if your house gets burgled, you have to delete all your music from your laptop when you get home; 2) you can't keep your music on any computers at work; 3) if you move out of the country, you have to delete all your music; 4) you must install any and all updates, or else lose the music on your computer; 5) Sony-BMG can install and use backdoors in the copy protection software or media player to "enforce their rights" against you, at any time, without notice. And the list goes on.
Don't buy any Sony-BMG music. And to teach these vicious bastards a lesson, don't buy any Sony products of any kind. Who needs 'em anyway? There are plenty of good home electronics brands that don't try to install unremoveable spyware on your computer.
Thanks to Vodkapundit.
How to determine if your CD will infect your computer here. In particular the following CDs are known to have the malicious code on them, but other Sony-BMG CDs might also have it:
Trey Anastasio, Shine (Columbia)
Celine Dion, On ne Change Pas (Epic)
Neil Diamond, 12 Songs (Columbia)
Our Lady Peace, Healthy in Paranoid Times (Columbia)
Chris Botti, To Love Again (Columbia)
Van Zant, Get Right with the Man (Columbia)
Switchfoot, Nothing is Sound (Columbia)
The Coral, The Invisible Invasion (Columbia)
Acceptance, Phantoms (Columbia)
Susie Suh, Susie Suh (Epic)
Amerie, Touch (Columbia)
Life of Agony, Broken Valley (Epic)
Horace Silver Quintet, Silver's Blue (Epic Legacy)
Gerry Mulligan, Jeru (Columbia Legacy)
Dexter Gordon, Manhattan Symphonie (Columbia Legacy)
The Bad Plus, Suspicious Activity (Columbia)
The Dead 60s, The Dead 60s (Epic)
Dion, The Essential Dion (Columbia Legacy)
Natasha Bedingfield, Unwritten (Epic)
Ricky Martin, Life (Columbia)
That's a shame. I've heard good things about the Neil Diamond CD and had intended to buy it. Would somebody please e-mail me the mp3s?